Vol 1 | #23 | 11.02.18

Read time: 2 minutes


What Monitors Are Saying

Did you know that the monitor you are reading this on is broadcasting what you are seeing? That’s right: not just showing, but broadcasting a description of what is on your screen by means of ultrasonic sound. Yeah, me neither. And now that a team of researchers has pioneered a way to use machine learning algorithms to convert this “acoustic leakage” into visual data … to literally see what the user of the screen is seeing. To make it even more astounding, the researchers were able to pull this acoustic signal from recordings taken from as far as 30 feet away, using microphones no more sophisticated than the one in your smartphone.


It’s Like Uber, For Your Face

Honestly, I don’t even know what to say about this. Read it for yourself and you tell me.


It’s Like Tesla For Planes

Whenever a global confab on climate change takes place, one of the predictable memes that rolls across places like Twitter goes something like this:

Nothing puts out CO2 quite like a set of Rolls Royce TAY 611-8’s on a G-IV burning sweet jet fuel.

But, what if like Tesla has done for personal travel on the ground, air travel could be done on electricity stored in super-efficient, lightweight batteries? Some mind-blowing stuff coming out of MIT.


Paper Airplane Database

Before the advent of social media turned the internet into a psychological and privacy hellscape, the internet was a place where anyone with a quirky interest could throw up a website with information that others might find valuable.

This is just such a site: a magnificent display of 40 paper airplane designs, filterable on 8 different characteristics, with super clear visual instructions for each. This is the internet at its purest expression of playfully useful.


An Interview With Gen. Stanley McChrystal (ret.)

This interview is a compelling read, full of humility, thoughtfulness and nuance.

Former US Secretary of Defense Robert Gates described McChrystal as “perhaps the finest warrior and leader of men in combat I ever met.” He was the commander of the coalition Joint Special Operations Command in Iraq in 2003-05 when the fighting was the hottest, and he led the entire operation in Afghanistan under President Obama after that. He is the author of one of my absolute favorite books — Team of Teams: New Rules of Engagement for a Complex World — and I can’t wait to tear into his latest offering, which came in the mail today.